Universidad Pontificia Comillas
  • Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Recent publications
This paper proposes a novel anomaly detection methodology for industrial systems based on Digital Twin (DT) ecosystems. In addition to DTs, conceived as a digital representation of a physical entity, this paper proposes a new concept of DT focused on modeling connections between physical behaviors. This new DT concept is called Snitch Digital Twin (SDT). The scope of the SDT is the study of variations between behaviors and support the detection of anomalies between them. The behavior of each physical entity is characterized by three spatiotemporal features computed from each collected measurement. Behavioral anomalies are identified and quantified through modular patterns based on quantile regression and behavioral indexes. Finally, the robustness of the proposed methodology is assessed by comparing it with the other two commonly used algorithms based on Kernel Principal Component Analysis (KPCA) and One-Class Support Vector Machines (OCSVM) in a case study application. The case study is based on the diagnosis of the cooling system of a power-generator diesel engine. The results obtained prove the advantages and goodness of this novel methodology compared to the two traditional algorithms.
At operational level, fossil fuel phase-out and high shares of non-dispatchable renewable energy resources (RES) will challenge the system operator’s (SO) ability to balance generation, and the demand at any time. The variability of RES output ranges from one hour to a season, and critical events such as low supply and high demand might occur more frequently and for more extended periods. When evaluating the role of Energy Storage Systems (ESSs) in this context, the need for a long time scope to capture the different RES variabilities must be reconciled with the need for modeling the hourly chronology. This paper presents a medium-term operation planning model, addressing both the energy dispatch and the balancing services. This study shows that representing the combined chronological variability of demand and RES production is essential to properly assess the roles of different kinds of ESSs in the future 2030 electricity mix. Otherwise, it would not be possible to appropriately capture the frequency, depth, and length of events for which ESSs are activated. The analysis also highlights the importance of considering balancing services, given the significant contribution of batteries to the reserve market. Finally, the results show that batteries and Pumped Storage Hydro (PSH) have different roles in the Spanish electricity system with a high renewable penetration. While PSH is mainly used to provide energy during critical periods, batteries mostly provide balancing services.
This paper presents a cost-based TSO-DSO coordination model to quantify the value of local flexibility services and analyze its impact on the transmission grid expansion and the system operation. Flexibility is provided to the DC power flow transmission grid model by microgrids within the integrated AC power flow distribution grid model. The model’s objective is to minimize the overall cost of transmission investments and procured flexibility and is achieved using a bilevel optimization approach where the power exchanges on all connected grid interfaces are controlled. Case studies using a combined test system of the IEEE RTS-96 transmission network interfacing multiple 33-bus distribution grids were performed to validate the model and assess the values and impacts of local flexibility on the transmission system expansion. The results showed that the proposed model modified the investment plan and dispatch of flexibility resources reducing the investment and operation cost of the transmission system.
Provision of firm capacity will become a challenge in power systems dominated by renewable generation. This paper analyzes the competitiveness and role of battery storage, six types of pumped-hydro storage, open cycle gas turbine (OCGT), and demand response (DR) technologies in providing the firm capacity required to guarantee the security of supply in a real-size power system such as the Spanish one in horizon 2030. The paper contributes with detailed and realistic modeling of the DR capabilities. Demand is disaggregated by sector and activities and projected towards 2030, applying a growth rate by activity. The load flexibility constraints are considered to ensure the validity of the results. A generation operation planning and expansion model, SPLODER, is conveniently upgraded to properly represent the different storage alternatives addressed in the paper. The results highlight the importance of considering demand response for evaluating long-term firm capacity requirements, showing a non-negligible impact on the investment decisions on the amount of firm capacity required in the system and the optimal shares of wind and solar PV renewable generation. Results also show the dominance of cost-competitiveness of pumped hydro and OCGTs over batteries. Additionally, capacity payments are required to support firm capacity providers’ investments.
Some of the most important materials that need recycling are generated by the construction industry. This waste has a multitude of disposal problems. In the specific case of railways, the treatment of materials taken from track maintenance and renewal operations is even more challenging. Every year, tons of track materials are replaced on rail tracks all over the world. These kilometres of rails, sleepers, and tons of ballast can be reused for other purposes. However, sometimes the environmental cost generated by their secondary use is worse than the problems involved in their disposal. This work describes a revised methodology to improve the recycling process of these waste track materials and considers the carbon footprint generated during the process along with important advantages and benefits for the economy and the environment. The reuse of these worn track materials is important to extend their life cycle and reduce environmental and economic costs in the long term. This research aims to analyse dismantled track material and evaluate possible second uses, taking into account the carbon footprint generated. Special attention has been placed on environmentally friendly uses such as fencing protected areas or green routes, among others.
The coordination between system operators is a key element for the decarbonization of the power system. Over the past few years, many EU-funded research projects have addressed the challenges of Transmission System Operators (TSO) and Distribution System Operators (DSO) coordination by implementing different data exchange architectures. This paper presents a review of the ICT architectures implemented for the main coordination schemes demonstrated in such projects. The main used technologies are analyzed, considering the type of data exchanged and the communication link. Finally, the paper presents the different gaps and challenges on TSO-DSO coordination related to ICT architectures that must still be faced, paying especial attention to the expected contribution of the EU-funded OneNet project on this topic.
Introduction: energy drinks have become more popular in different population groups. Aims: the research aimed to study the effect of the intake of a honeyrich energy drink (BeeBad EnegyDrink®, Parodi Group, Italy) and a popular energy drink with free sugars on insulin, glycemia, total protein and triglycerides. Material and methods: fifteen male students participated in the study (20.85 ± 2.67 years). Two separate evaluations were performed on three days. Blood samples were obtained before ingesting the energy drink in a fasting state, 30 minutes, 60 minutes and 120 minutes after ingesting the drinks. On the first day participants ingested the honey-rich energy drink (BeeBad EnegyDrink®, Parodi Group, Italy) while on the second day participants ingested the energy drink with free sugars. Results: there were significant differences in glucose and insulin over time (p < 0.01). Regarding the differences between energy drinks, there were differences in insulin values, being lower after taking the honey-rich energy drink (p < 0.05). In addition, the increase in glucose and insulin at 30 minutes was lower after ingesting the honey-rich energy drink. Conclusions: ingestion of honey-rich energy drink produces lower elevations of insulin and glucose compared to a popular energy drink with free sugar in healthy subjects. Based on the results, honey-rich energy drinks could be an alternative to conventional energy drinks.
Multiple-perpetrator rape is an under-studied topic, but there has been a recent increase in studies on the differences between multiple-perpetrator sexual offenses and the ones perpetrated by solo offenders. This study aims to have a deeper understanding of the differences between multiple-perpetrator and solo-offender sexual assaults committed by strangers, from a sample of 400 sexual aggressions reported to the Spanish police in 2010. Differences were explored on variables related to characteristics of perpetrators, the assault (approach, control, maintenance, termination, and sexual behavior), and the victims. Data were obtained from police files on sexual assaults committed around the country. Significant differences found were similar to other studies conducted in other countries and proved that multiple perpetrator assaults committed by strangers are a different subtype. Additionally, four predictive variables of multiple-perpetrator rape were identified: older age (OR = 0.943, 95% CI = [0.92, 0.97]), alcohol or drug use (OR = 2.499, 95% CI = [1.50, 4.32]), non-Spanish nationals (OR = 1.980, 95% CI = [1.14, 3.45]), and use of violence to control the victim (OR = 2.465, 95% CI = [1.03, 5.90]). The cultural and leisure characteristics of Spanish society provide facilitating opportunities for multiple-perpetrator rapes and prevention strategies should be urgently addressed.
Criminal enforcement of environmental laws is developed in the European Union and in the United States. In the European Union, Directive 2008/99 has established a minimum floor in all Member States, by introducing a list of conducts that may amount to criminal liability; unlawfulness and a minimum degree of intent is required in all cases. In the United States it is accepted, through case law, that criminal liability may arise when damages to the environment or persons exist; in certain cases, no need to know about the illegality of the action has been required.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the acute effect of a single dry sauna bath lasting twelve minutes on the indirect determination of the one maximum repetition (1RM) leg press among trained and untrained participants. Thirty young men participated in the study, a trained group (TG; n = 15; age: 20.97 ± 0.44 years) and an untrained group (UG; n = 15; age: 21.03 ± 0.11 years). Subjects in the TG had performed resistance training for at least two years before the beginning of the experiment. All participants performed two indirect tests of their one maximum repetition leg press on two different days, with a rest period of three weeks between tests. Additionally, anthropometric, body composition, blood pressure, body temperature, and rated perceived exertion were evaluated. On the second testing day, all of the participants took a dry sauna bath lasting 12 min immediately before performing the leg press test. In the second evaluation (pre-heating in the sauna), the UG experienced increases in absolute RM (178.48 ± 56.66 to 217.60 ± 59.18 kg; p < 0.05; R = 0.798), relative RM (2.65 ± 0.61 to 3.24 ± 0.58 kg·g body mass−1; p < 0.05; R = 0.798), and muscular RM (5.64 ± 1.20 to 6.77 ± 1.14 kg·kg muscle mass−1; p < 0.05; R = 0.797). The TG also increased their values on the second day in absolute RM (284.96 ± 62.41 to 314.92 ± 1.04 kg; p < 0.01; R = 0.886), in relative RM (3.61 ± 0.88 to 3.99 ± 1.85 kg*kg body mass−1; p < 0.01; R = 0.886), and muscular RM (7.83 ± 1.69 to 8.69 ± 1.85 kg·kg muscle mass−1; p < 0.01; R = 0.854). A passive, extreme-heat sauna bath lasting 12 min taken immediately before a relative maximum repetition test seems to provoke clear positive responses for the development of strength
Introduction The extent to which social media contributes to body image dissatisfaction and lower self-esteem is currently under debate Objectives This research seeks to study the relationship between the use of Instagram (one of the main platforms used by young people nowadays) and the degree of dissatisfaction with body image and the level of self-esteem among their younger users Methods A sample of 585 Spanish adults between 18 and 40 years old was used, to whom the Body Shape Questionnaire (BSQ), the Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale and the Social Comparison of Appearance Scale (PACS) were applied. Results A positive correlation was observed between the frequency of use of the social network and dissatisfaction with body image and low self-esteem. In addition, it was found that content observation time significantly predicts body dissatisfaction and low self-esteem. On the other hand, the type of content both published and observed, showed no effect on any of these variables, although it has been found that the relationship between the use of the platform and the study variables seems to be mediated by the tendency of their users to compare their appearance with others. Conclusions These results invite us to reflect on the use of social networks and their impact on constructs as relevant to the person as self-esteem and body image and on how different policies should be taken into account to prevent a negative impact on the mental health of their users Disclosure No significant relationships.
Background and objective The present study aims to analyze the levels of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in patients with end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) in haemodialysis, and to explore what demographic, medical and psychological variables are associated with HRQL and contribute to its prediction. Materials and methods Cross-sectional study with 302 patients with ACKD on haemodialysis. They were assessed: (1) HRQoL (Shorter Form Health Survey Questionnaire); (2) Anxiety and depression (Goldberg Anxiety and Depression Scale); (3) Sociodemographic data and (4) Medical data. Correlational analyses, means comparison and a path analyses with latent variables (PALV) were conducted. Results The PALV showed that 42% of the variance in the HRQL could be explained by the variables evaluated (χ²/df = 2.10; GFI = .938; IFI = .920; CFI = .918; RMSEA = .062; SRMR = .056). Depression was the strongest predictor of HRQL (−.71; p =.002), followed by physical activity (−.19; p = .044). Age (−.122; p = .034) and comorbidity (−.206; p = .001) were weakly associated with physical HRQL. The practice of regular physical activity is related to the physical HRQoL (r = .21; p = .00) and mental (r = .12; p = .028). Conclusions A high percentage of the variance in HRQoL is explained by the levels of depression and physical activity. Interventions to promote HRQoL in patients with ESKD should focus in promoting physical activity and taking care of patient’s mental health.
Thermal and Fire hazards result in numerous damage to human life and property. The early detection and instant communication of potential hazards using environmentally sustainable sensors before they occur would significantly reduce the negative impact on the environment while saving lives and property from destruction. Here-in, for the first time, a self-powered thermal and fire hazard sensor was designed by coupling gravitational potential energy to the triboelectric effect to generate electric signals. Harnessing the mechanical integrity and phase change property of the paraffin rod, it is employed as mechanical load support and thermal receptor in the sensor. Furthermore, the sensor was integrated with several communication interfaces such as liquid crystal display (LCD), Wi-Fi emitter, light-emitting diode (LED) light, IoT network, and mobile phone. The sensor exhibited an instant response (~0 s response time) at temperature ranges between 80-89 °C.
Disruption in many supply chains has shown the vulnerability of global supply networks, especially resource-intensive ones, due to the simultaneous effects of pandemics and geopolitical crises. Reshoring and nearshoring strategies are the possible responses of manufacturing companies to disruptions in order to adapt to unforeseen events. The supply chain for the Italian ceramic sector, which is characterized by a high intensity of natural and energy resource consumption and a sourcing system with a high geopolitical risk, is examined in this study. The functional decomposition technique was used to analyze the supply chain; then, three scenarios were developed as potential remedies for the unexpected termination of Ukrainian plastic clay supply. The study also showed that complex issues require multifaceted analysis approaches, which is why a transdisciplinary approach was chosen. In addition, the analysis of the ceramic industry showed that nearshoring and reshoring strategies can reduce supply risk and have a positive impact on the environment. The study also showed how bringing extraction sources closer to factories significantly reduces CO2 emissions to the atmosphere from transportation. The main contribution of this paper is the analysis of the complexity of supply chains in times of disruption, configuring reshoring and nearshoring options through transdisciplinarity.
After over a year of the COVID-19 pandemic, we observe very different health and economic outcomes across countries. Has this also been the case for the communication of their leaders? Has the communication of the political leaders of most affected countries shown higher levels of sentiment? This study uses Twitter to test whether a sample of European leaders exhibited empathy in their unmediated communications, as advocated by neo-charismatic leadership theories. We find that leaders do show emotions in their communications. However, there are no significant differences between them, leading us to reject the hypothesis that leaders of the most affected countries displayed more empathy than those of the least affected.
Iron (Fe) is one of the most widely studied trace mineral elements. Fe metabolism and homeostasis could be altered by physical training. The aim of this study was to analyze the influence of long-term physical training on serum, plasma, urine (extracellular), erythrocyte and platelet (in-tracellular) Fe concentrations. Forty men from the same geographical area divided into a training group (TG; n = 20; 18.15 ± 0.27 years) and a control group (CG; n = 20; 19.25 ± 0.39 years) participated in this study. The TG was composed of soccer players of the highest youth category. The CG consisted of young people who did not follow any training routine and had not practiced any sport for at least the previous six months. The TG showed higher plasma and serum Fe concentrations (p < 0.05), but lower concentrations in erythrocytes and platelets compared to the CG (p < 0.01). Due to the differences observed in the extracellular and intracellular compartments, it seems necessary to perform a global Fe analysis to assess Fe status.
Background Both genetic background and diet are important determinants of cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Understanding gene-diet interactions could help improve CVD prevention and prognosis. We aimed to summarise the evidence on gene-diet interactions and CVD outcomes systematically. Methods We searched MEDLINE ® via Ovid, Embase, PubMed ® , and The Cochrane Library for relevant studies published until June 6th 2022. We considered for inclusion cross-sectional, case–control, prospective cohort, nested case–control, and case-cohort studies as well as randomised controlled trials that evaluated the interaction between genetic variants and/or genetic risk scores and food or diet intake on the risk of related outcomes, including myocardial infarction, coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke and CVD as a composite outcome. The PROSPERO protocol registration code is CRD42019147031. Results and discussion We included 59 articles based on data from 29 studies; six articles involved multiple studies, and seven did not report details of their source population. The median sample size of the articles was 2562 participants. Of the 59 articles, 21 (35.6%) were qualified as high quality, while the rest were intermediate or poor. Eleven (18.6%) articles adjusted for multiple comparisons, four (7.0%) attempted to replicate the findings, 18 (30.5%) were based on Han-Chinese ethnicity, and 29 (49.2%) did not present Minor Allele Frequency. Fifty different dietary exposures and 52 different genetic factors were investigated, with alcohol intake and ADH1C variants being the most examined. Of 266 investigated diet-gene interaction tests, 50 (18.8%) were statistically significant, including CETP-TaqIB and ADH1C variants, which interacted with alcohol intake on CHD risk. However, interactions effects were significant only in some articles and did not agree on the direction of effects. Moreover, most of the studies that reported significant interactions lacked replication. Overall, the evidence on gene-diet interactions on CVD is limited, and lack correction for multiple testing, replication and sample size consideration.
Background: In the Spanish region of Galicia, one of the most fire-prone areas in Europe, most wildfires are directly or indirectly related to human activities, so socioeconomic conditions and population characteristics become determinant in wildfire management. Socioeconomic factors could also help explain the causes and distribution of wildfires spatially and temporally within the region. We sought to improve the temporal and spatial understanding of the causes of forest land wildfires in Galicia by analyzing the importance of socioeconomic and natural variables over the wildfire ignitions and hectares burned during 2001-2015. We established the municipality as the smallest geographical section with readily available information on socioeconomic factors and forest land wildfires. Results: We used clustering to analyze the spatial dimension and regression analysis of panel data to investigate the temporal dimension. Through the cluster analysis, we divided the region interterritorially according to its socio-economic behavior; nevertheless, our results suggest that the geographical distribution of the municipalities belonging to the four clusters has a similar pattern to that of the Galician provinces. Our regression models for each cluster indicate that several socioeconomic factors are at least correlated with and may tend to influence wildfire occurrence and burned area in Galicia. We also found discernable patterns related to our identified clusters, confirming that differences between territories exist regarding the likely influence of socioeconomic factors on the number of wildfire ignitions and hectares burned. Conclusions: Results suggest that explanatory socioeconomic variables are as crucial as meteorological variables in wildfire ignitions and burned area and that an accurate knowledge of inter-territorial socioeconomic differences could help to design wildfire prevention policies best suited to the socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental circumstances of each territory.
The purpose of this paper is to study the role of broadband in mitigating the economic losses resulting from COVID-19 in the United States by providing a necessary infrastructure to keep economic systems operating, albeit partially. The study is based on an empirical framework underlined by a Cobb–Douglas production function and estimated within a structural multi-equation model through the three-stage least squares approach. To consider the impact of COVID-19 on the economy, we rely on two main variables: an indicator of the quantity of deaths attributed to the disease for every 100,000 inhabitants; and the Stringency Index, a metric linked to the intensity of social restrictions imposed by national and local governments. The main contribution of this article is to provide robust evidence for how the heterogeneous effects of the pandemic across states are in part explained by differences in broadband adoption. Our results indicate that those states with higher broadband adoption were able to mitigate a larger portion of their economic losses derived from the pandemic-induced lockdowns. Addressing the digital divide and ensuring universal access to broadband represent critical goals for building economic resilience to face future emergencies.
The one-dimensional Kardar-Parisi-Zhang (KPZ) equation is becoming an overarching paradigm for the scaling of nonequilibrium, spatially extended, classical and quantum systems with strong correlations. Recent analytical solutions have uncovered a rich structure regarding its scaling exponents and fluctuation statistics. However, the zero surface tension or zero viscosity case eludes such analytical solutions and has remained ill-understood. Using numerical simulations, we elucidate a well-defined universality class for this case that differs from that of the viscous case, featuring intrinsically anomalous kinetic roughening (despite previous expectations for systems with local interactions and time-dependent noise) and ballistic dynamics. The latter may be relevant to recent quantum spin chain experiments which measure KPZ and ballistic relaxation under different conditions. We identify the ensuing set of scaling exponents in previous discrete interface growth models related with isotropic percolation, and show it to describe the fluctuations of additional continuum systems related with the noisy Korteweg–de Vries equation. Along this process, we additionally elucidate the universality class of the related inviscid stochastic Burgers equation.
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Mario Castro Ponce
  • Department of Computer Systems
Antonio Rua Vieites
  • Department of Quantitative Methods
Carmen Meneses Falcón
  • Department of Sociology and Social Work
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c/ Alberto Aguilera 23, 28015, Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Head of institution
Rector Enrique Sanz SJ
Website
www.comillas.edu
Phone
915422800